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Patients have the right to:

  • Reasonable access to care;
  • Care that is considerate and respectful of his or her personal values and beliefs;
  • Be informed about and participate in decisions regarding his or her care;
  • Participate in ethical questions that arise in the course of his or her care, including issues of conflict resolution, withholding or resuscitative services, forgoing or withdrawal of life sustaining treatment and participation in investigational studies or clinical trials;
  • Security and personal privacy and confidentiality of information; designating a decision maker in case the patient is incapable of understanding a proposed treatment or procedure or is unable to communicate his or her wishes regarding care;
  • Access protective services;
  • Appropriate assessment and management of pain;
  • Participate in the development and implementation of his or her plan of care;
  • Make informed decisions regarding his or her care. This includes being informed of his or her health status, being involved in care planning and treatment, and being able to request or refuse treatment. This right does not include the ability to demand the provision of treatment or services deemed to be medically unnecessary or inappropriate;
  • Formulate advance directives (inpatients only) and have hospital staff and practitioners who provide care comply with these directives;
  • Have a family member or representative of his or her choice, and his or her own physician notified promptly of his or her admission to the hospital;
  • Personal privacy. this right does not include the right to a private room; receive care in a safe setting; be free from all forms of abuse and harassment;
  • Confidentiality of his or her clinical records;
  • Access information contained in his or her clinical records within a reasonable period of time;
  • Be free from restraints and/or seclusion in any form that are not medically necessary or are used as a means of coercion, discipline, convenience, or retaliation by staff.
  • Exercise these rights without regard to sex, economic status, educational background, race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, sexual orientation, or marital status, or the source of payment for care;
  • Considerate and respectful care;
  • Knowledge of the names of the physician who has primary responsibility for coordinating the care and names and professional relationships of other physicians and non-physicians who will see the patient;
  • Receive information about the illness, the course of treatment and prospects for recovery in terms that the patient can understand;
  • Receive as much information about any proposed treatment or procedure as the patient may need in order to give informed consent or to refuse this course of treatment. Except in emergencies, this information shall include a description of the procedure or treatment, the medically significant risks involved in this treatment, alternate courses of treatment or non-treatment and the risks involved in each and to know the name of the person who will carry out the procedure or treatment;
  • Participate actively in decisions regarding medical care. To the extent permitted by law, this includes the right to refuse treatment;
  • Full consideration of privacy concerning the medical care program. Case discussion, consultation, examination, and treatment are confidential and should be conducted discreetly. The patient has the right to be advised as to the reason for the presence of any individual;
  • Confidential treatment of all communications and records pertaining to the care and the stay in the hospital. Written permission shall be obtained before the medical records can be made available to anyone not directly concerned with the care;
  • Reasonable responses to any reasonable request made for service;
  • Leave the hospital even against the advice of physicians;
  • Reasonable continuity of care and to know in advance the time and location of appointment as well as the identity of persons providing the care;
  • Be advised if hospital/personal physician proposes to engage in or perform human experimentation affecting care or treatment. The patient has the right to refuse to participate in such research projects;
  • Be informed of continuing health care requirements following discharge from the hospital;
  • Examine and receive an explanation of the bill regardless of source of payment;
  • Know which hospital rules and policies apply to the patient’s conduct while a patient;
  • Have all patients’ rights apply to the person who may have legal responsibility to make decisions regarding medical care on behalf of the patient;
  • Designate visitors of his/her choosing, if the patient has decision-making capacity, whether or not the visitor is related by blood or marriage, unless:

a) No visitors are allowed;

b) The facility reasonably determines that the presence of a particular visitor would endanger the health or safety of a patient, a member of the health facility staff, or other visitors to the health facility, or would significantly disrupt the operations of the facility;

c) The patient has indicated to the health facility staff that the patient no longer wants this person to visit.

  • Have the patient’s wishes considered for purposes of determining who may visit if the patient lacks decision-making capacity and to have that method disclosed in the hospital policy on visitation. At a minimum, the hospital shall include any persons living in the household. This section may not be construed to prohibit a health facility otherwise establishing reasonable restrictions upon visitation, including restrictions upon the hours of visitation and numbers of visitors.

Patients are responsible for:

  • Providing, to the best of their knowledge, accurate and complete information about presenting complaints, past illnesses, hospitalizations, medications, and other matters relating to the patient’s health. they are responsible for reporting unexpected changes in the patient’s condition to the responsible practitioner;
  • Asking questions when they do not understand what has been told about the patient’s care or what they are expected to do;
  • Following the treatment plan developed with the practitioner. They should express any concerns they have about their ability follow the proposed course of treatment.
  • Accepting the consequences of failing to follow the recommended course of treatment or using other treatments;
  • The outcomes of refusing treatment or failing to follow practitioner instructions;
  • Following the hospital’s rules and regulations concerning patient care and conduct;
  • Being considerate of other patients and hospital personnel by not making unnecessary noise, smoking, or causing distractions;
  • Respecting the property of other persons and that of the hospital.

Patient Grievance

Consistent with our mission and values, St. Vincent Medical Center supports the assurance of patient rights to each patient. You have right to file a complaint/grievance with the hospital. Your concerns as a patient are very important to us. Any member of health care team can receive a grievance or complaint. They then report the complaint to their manager / supervisor, Patient Relations or the Risk Management office as appropriate. Patient relations or the risk Management office will respond your issues in a timely manner. You may reach Patient Relations (213) 484-7462 or Risk Management at (213) 484-7383.

Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)

St. Vincent Medical Center complies with all provisions of the Health Insurance Portability and accountability act (HIPAA) of 1996. You received a Joint notice of Privacy Practices when you were admitted to SVMC. We encourage you to read this explanation of your new rights to control your health information. Should you have any questions or concerns about your privacy, please feel free to discuss them with any of your caregivers. If you still have questions or concerns, call the SVMC Privacy Officer at extension 7067.

If you wish to complain about your privacy, you may call our ValuesLine at 1-800-271-3176 and file a complaint. Your complaint can be made anonymous, if you wish. We log all calls to this independent ValuesLine, and you will be given a number. Then, after we have had time to investigate the complaint and take action, you can call back and we will tell you, without your having to be identified, what the resolution was.

We are committed to providing you with the best quality of care, and that quality includes respect for your privacy. We perform our duties with respect for the traditions of our sponsors, the Daughters of Charity. For more information on HIPAA, visit